Where to stay: SPAIN
For people who care where they stay. Authentic. Soulful. Charm. Design. Indie. Local.
Aragón & Navarra
Castille (La Mancha & Léon)
Ibiza & Formentera
Pyrenees & Andorra
La Rioja & La Rioja Alavesa
Moure Hotel | Santiago de Compostela, Spain
The hotel occupies a creatively converted, family-owned 19th-century building that was once a students’ hostel. Bold industrial-chic décor is fused with Galician charm, with sharp whites, lime-greens and distressed wood offsetting typical galerías and original open-stone walls. Inventive design features maximise light, space and minimalism, and playful touches such as in-room showers, or bathtubs in fun places, add a sprinkle of romance.
A Casa de Aldán | Aldán, Spain
Overlooking the harbour, the A Casa de Aldán Hotel is situated in the fishing village of Aldán on the west coast of Galicia. Architect Alfonso Penela has created a building from the ruins of an old salting factory, which preserves the history of the place and at the same time radiates modernity. The reduction to a few materials—raw stone is combined with smooth cedar wood, glass and zinc—creates a calm, timeless ambience.
Hotel Can Mostatxins | Alcúdia, Mallorca
Can Mostatxins, an elegant and lovingly restored 15th-century property, has been transformed into a chic, contemporary boutique hotel in the heart of Alcúdia old town. Painstakingly refurbished by local artisans, the result is a charming urban retreat that marries gothic arches and medieval stonework with stylish lighting, contemporary furniture and extensive windows and glass passageways.
Cortijo del Marqués | Albolote, Spain
In the middle of glorious Spanish nowhere, Andalucia’s Cortijo del Marqués is a beautifully restored 19th-century manor turned luxury boutique hotel. Lounge poolside, ramble hand-in-hand through fields of olive trees and sunflowers, then dine in a candlelit courtyard.
XUQ | Jorquera, Spain
Eight groovy suites tucked into the walls of the Júcar gorge. The hotel was created by friends Victor Pinedo and Fernando Monteagudo, who left their jobs (in engineering and accountancy), bought a row of rundown, middle-of-nowhere cave dwellings, and embarked on a “new concept in rural tourism”. They took the name from Xuquer (Arabic for Júcar) and jazzed up the cave rooms with memory foam pillows, original art, retro fridges, dinky kitchenettes and designer furniture (the odd Eames chair).
Eurostars Valbusenda Hotel Bodega & Spa | Toro, Spain
The province of Zamora, just upriver from Portugal’s famous Douro Valley, is home to the Toro wine designation, and is also home to the impressive Eurostars Valbusenda Hotel Bodega & Spa. The modern structure contains 35 contemporary-luxe rooms, plus there are indoor and outdoor pools and a hydrotherapy spa. Naturally, it’s laser-focused on good food and wine, with venues including a fine-dining restaurant and piano bar to go along with the on-site winery’s tasting rooms and bodega.
El Avenida Palace | Barcelona
The grand and imposing façade is complemented by a team of top-hatted, tail-coated doormen and makes for an exciting arrival. Once inside, guests are treated to an Art Deco visual feast of polished marble columns, ornate chandeliers, gilded staircases and antique furniture.
RIU Plaza España | Madrid
The RIU Plaza España occupies 24 floors of the emblematic 27-storey Edificio España, which originally opened in 1954 as a mixed-use structure containing a hotel, offices, apartments and shops. It is an striking example of 20th-century Spanish architecture built in the neo-baroque style. Its profile, on Plaza de España at the end of the Gran Vía, complements the neighboring skyscraper Torre de Madrid, making the pair important architectural landmarks in the Spanish capital.
Wellington Hotel | Madrid
The five-star Wellington is one of Madrid’s most renowned hotels and will thrill fans of old-school glamour. With several restaurants, including the Michelin-starred Kabuki, an organic vegetable garden on the roof and a superb spa and pool, it satisfies both traditional and contemporary tastes.
An unusual business hotel, it opened as the Castellana Hilton in 1953 in a former ducal palace. There's magnificent pillars and floors, made from heavily-veined Alicante red marble, in the lobby, as well as an imperial staircase, carpeted in royal blue. A huge, brass, neo-gothic chandelier with faux candles and medieval-style pierced metalwork hangs sensationally from the central bronze ceiling alcove. The public areas are bedecked with burly Louis XIV-style chairs.
2022: Hard Rock Hotel Marbella | Spain
Previously the Andalucía Plaza Hotel, the property is undergoing a complete transformation to convert the site into a Hard Rock Hotel with 384 rooms, including 50 suites. Hard Rock is actively sourcing bespoke memorabilia to be featured in the property from celebrated Spanish artists across music, dance, and art to create an authentic experience for guests that echoes both the hotel's location and Hard Rock's renowned memorabilia collection of more than 86,000 items.
Mandarin Oriental, Ritz Madrid
The Mandarin Oriental Ritz flung open its gleaming doors this summer after an exquisite €85m renovation by Spanish architect Rafael de la-Hoz and French designers Gilles & Boissier. It is glittering and spectacular. It’s the sort of place that embroiders guests’ initials into their pillowcases and pre-stocks your favourite wine in the minibar.
Rosewood Villa Magna | Madrid
The five-star Villa Magna, now under Rosewood management, has been one of the smartest addresses in Madrid since it opened in 1972. Remodelled in 2021, the property feels both contemporary and classic and is one of the few international-standard luxury hotels in the city. Bold geometric artworks liven up the lobby and lounge areas, which are usually buzzing with non-guests – this is a popular place for meetings, lunches and drinks.
Hotel Emblemático San Agustín | Icod de los Vinos, Tenerife
A charming small hotel set in the heart of the historic old town of Icod de los Vinos. Housing just eight traditionally dressed rooms, the best of which face around the central courtyard. An authentic base to explore the island from.
Hotel Emblemático San Marcos
The Hotel Emblemático San Marcos is the result of the careful refurbishment of a lovely, 18th-century Canarian mansion. It is located in the historical centre of Icod de los Vinos, next to the ancient Dragon Tree. It is an ideal location for a quiet stay during which time will pass at a slower rate and where the guest feels just as if he were at home. The spaces full of charm and an atmosphere of rest and relaxation are perfect for chatting, reading or simply appreciating history and art.
Gran Hotel Montesol | Ibiza
Ibiza's oldest hotel (1933) had a renovation a few years back and operated under the Curio by Hilton brand. Now it has been taken over by the Experimental Group, famous for their cocktail bars, who again will be introducing a complete new look under the supervision of Dorothée Melichzon, who styles all their hotels.
INNSiDE Madrid Gran Vía
The building was inaugurated in 1923 as the Alfonso XIII hotel, and was always known as the Hotel Avenida. In recent years it was renamed the TRYP Cibeles hotel and from 2021 has its current name. Inside it has been completely renovated in a contemporary style and not much remains of the grandeur.
Hostal de la Gavina | S'Agaro, Spain
This is top notch, old-school Spanish grandeur. There’s an air of unhurried luxury as you enter the oval-halled reception with its inlaid marble flooring, high ceilings, antiques and elaborate floral displays. The lounge and library feel like a ducal stately home, with 17th-century Arbusson tapestries, while the huge outdoor pool with its sea views, Grecian style busts on pillars and loungers couldn’t be more glamorous.
Hotel de Londres y de Inglaterra | San Sebastián, Spain
All the trappings of Belle Époque beauty are there: gorgeous detailed crown moulding, marble floors, ornate light fixtures, and a great old lift. The rest of the décor is vintage enough to reach a level of agreeable kitsch, with nautical references, from the paintings to model boats, scattered around the hotel. The façade, with its early 1900s Wes Anderson look, is the most photogenic side of the hotel.
Gran Hotel La Florida | Barcelona
Originally built in 1925, this luxury boutique hotel combines traditional Spanish design with contemporary styling to achieve an air of timeless glamour. The gilded lobby area is a visual feast of wrought iron and dark wood contrasted with avant-garde sculptures and exotic floral displays. Perched atop the verdant Mount Tibidabo at 512 metres offers dramatic views over Barcelona.
Gran Hotel Sardinero | Santander, Spain
From the outside, you’ll admire a palatial soft-white building from 1890, brilliantly maintained and adorned with ornate black metal balconies and deep-grey turrets (some of which contain duplex rooms). Then arrive in the strikingly modern lobby, with its stylish wood-feature walls, splashes of blue and circular sofa, above which dangle gold-painted orb-shaped lamps. Rooms are fresh, fashionable and comfy.
Eurostars Hotel Real | Santander, Spain
The building has been a hotel since 1917, when it was created to host guests of the royal family, who spent summers at the nearby Palacio de la Magdalena. Behind the imposing façade, carpeted corridors, wooden staircases, elaborate chandeliers and a series of opulent lounges firmly retain the belle-époque grandeur. Outside, the sweeping terrace overlooks tall palms and leafy gardens and, in the distance beyond, El Puntal beach.
El Palace Hotel | Barcelona
El Palace is all Baroque opulence. Like a small-scale version of Versailles in the center of Barcelona, this property used to be the Ritz, and it shows in everything from the fancy doormen in top hats to the old-school room keys to the lavish fabrics and furnishings. It is a stately grande dame hotel that has been one of Barcelona's leaders in luxury ever since it first opened in 1919.
The Westin Palace, Madrid
The Palace from 1912 is one of those hotels where you step through the door and enter a different world. It is all about traditional glamour here, with old-school waiters and sumptuous décor to make you feel cosseted at all times. La Rotonda, the restaurant and lounge area under an ornate stained-glass dome, is a circle of elegance in teal, ochre and raspberry tones, where locals and guests meet for coffee and drinks at all times of day.